How to Talk to Teens About Dating Violence - Futures Without Violence Futures Without Violence
6 Tips for Parents Talking About Dating Abuse. February 27 Teens may be nervous or worried to share their experiences with their parents. TEEN DATING. VIOLENCE: TIPS FOR. PARENTS. Illustration by. Billy Nuñez physical violence in a dating relationship. There are warning signs of abuse. Dating abuse is a pattern of behavior, attitudes and beliefs that seek to exert power and Need to Impress Is your child receiving lots of “advice” about choices in friends, There are many reasons why teens don't tell parents about the abuse.
Perpetrators manipulate their victims by belittling and demeaning them. Over time, victims begin to adopt a self-image that is consistent with statements made by their abuser; i.8 Ways to Improve Parent Child Relationship
Therefore, it is important for youth to recognize this type of behavior early in a relationship and to exit that relationship promptly. Abusive partners will usually try to isolate victims from their friends and family in order to avoid detection, and to gain greater power and control over their victims. Abusers employ many methods to isolate victims, some very subtle. An abuser may directly tell their partner they may not socialize with someone, or the abuser may become so unpleasant when their victim spends time with others that eventually the victim "chooses" not to spend time with other people.
For instance, an abuser may demand the victim always tell them where they are, and may insist upon an immediate response to their phone calls, texts, and other communications while they are with other people.
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Eventually meeting these demands becomes so unpleasant or embarrassing that the victim gradually discontinues contact with other people. Another way abusers isolate their victims is to monopolize their time by demanding the victim spend more and more time with them instead of socializing with others, doing homework, going to work, or doing other activities.
Protecting Teens from Abusive Relationships and Dating Violence
Perpetrators also control and to manipulate their partners by threatening to hurt themselves or to kill themselves if the partner leaves the relationship.
Over time, victims begin to feel powerless and helpless to change the situation or their self-esteem has sunk so low that they begin to believe their abuser is the only person that could ever "love" them; and, lacking contact with other healthy people they do not receive any evidence to the contrary. There are several warning signs parents should pay attention to that could indicate that their adolescent may be a victim of dating violence.
Any unexplainable bruises, cuts, abrasions, or other injuries can indicate a youth is experiencing some form of physical violence. Furthermore, if a youth starts to spend excessive amount of time with their boyfriend or girlfriend and they seem worried or anxious about being out of contact with that partner, this might indicate that they are feeling pressured to stay in contact with them.
If parents notice that their teen is spending more and more time with a dating or romantic partner, and simultaneously the teen begins to either drop out of activities that were previously enjoyed, spends far less time with other friends, or starts to struggle academically, these signs may be cause for concern. Furthermore, any drastic change in a teen's mood or personality around the same time a relationship with a significant-other intensifies can also be a warning sign.
If parents suspect that their adolescent child is experiencing an abusive romantic relationship, they should talk to their child about their concerns in a manner that demonstrates love and concern while encouraging their child to talk about any troubling aspects of their relationship with their partner.
Parents should mention specific changes or warning signs they have noticed and explain why those signs cause concern. As mentioned, victims of relationship abuse and dating violence are often reluctant to talk about their experiences because they may feel powerless, ashamed, or frightened and may deny there is any cause for concern, or may become angry and upset with their parents for raising the topic.
Tell them that you are concerned for their safety and well-being and that you are there for them. Ask them what they would like to have happen…how can you help them be safe. Keep the lines of communication open! Resist this natural impulse. It will likely shut them down.
Blame them for the abuse or make them feel judged. Punish them because of an abusive partner.
Let your child know that controlling behaviors are abusive and will prevent them from having a healthy, happy relationship. Hold your child accountable. Get advice from teen dating violence prevention hotlines or teen counselors how to support your child through a relationship break up. Take whatever safety measures are necessary. Have friends available so your teenager does not have to walk alone.
How to Talk to Teens About Dating Violence
Consider changing class schedules or getting help from the guidance counselor, school principal, or the police if necessary. I love you and I want to help. Sometimes people behave in ways that are scary and make you feel threatened — even without using physical violence. Pay attention to your gut feelings. You are not to blame; no matter how guilty the person doing this to you is trying to make you feel. Your partner should not be doing this to you. It is not your responsibility to help this person change.